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RE: Application Design

At 22:08 09/08/2001 -0400, Mike.Champion@SoftwareAG-USA.com wrote:
>3) XSLT in particular has a good story (on paper, and increasingly in
>reality) for supporting changing output requirements.  You need to support
>some HTML subset or WML for wireless?  Write another stylesheet. You need to
>put out the data in your industry's new XML schema?  Write another
>stylesheet.  In a programming/imperative architecture, you get to write the
>same code over and over again; OK, maybe you can modularize your code well
>enough to do this cleanly (after a few trips around the spiral model or
>after a few Extreme Programming refactorizations), but you still need a
>programmer skilled in your specific environment to do each new output
>format.  XSLT editing tools are getting good enough so that it's not a big
>stretch to think that a person with ordinary web design skills will be able
>to do the stylesheets in the near future.

If only the world were so simple!

In my experience, be it styling for WML or schema-to-schema
transformations you hit the limits of any sandboxed, declarative
syntax such as XSLT really, really fast.

XSLT is an example of a 20/80 point technology:-) It
gets you 80% towards a solution quickly but makes the remaining
20% either impossible or so hard that the time it takes to get
that last 20% done, wipes out the gains you made on the
first 80%!